People, R&D

‘Patients are not a company’s resource’: FDA cancer czar Richard Pazdur has a bone to pick with the top R&D execs in cancer

If there’s one law in oncology R&D, it’s that you don’t cross FDA cancer czar Richard Pazdur. Pazdur is famous for cutting companies to shreds during panel reviews if they come to the agency with questionable data after straying from the path he set for them. 

A blunt speaker, Pazdur tends to deliver on what he says. When he stood up at ASCO several years ago to say that the breakthrough therapy designation was important and that the agency would start hustling along accelerated reviews for cancer patients, he delivered on every word — spurring a revolution in the way cancer drug trials are designed and executed and influencing the entire field of research and development.

And now he’s clearly unhappy with the way the oncology R&D world has unleashed thousands of studies involving a rapidly proliferating set of PD-1/L1 checkpoint therapies that have created a whole new megablockbuster franchise for industry players to tackle.


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Research Scientist - Immunology
Recursion Pharmaceuticals Salt Lake City, UT
Director of Operations
Atlas Venture Cambridge, MA

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